Revisit: Aji Sai ★ 1/2

Price: Under $25 for ACYE dinner.

So I rarely make these revisit posts but felt the experience from my last visit warranted it.

I went to Aji Sai one night with a large group – about 15 or so approx. Knowing this was would be a hassle for the restaurant, I made my reservations 2 weeks in advance and even called a week before to make sure I still had my reservation. No problems so far. Well, on the day of I call about 15 minutes before my reservation to adjust my seating numbers. Only to discover they have no such reservation noted!! MY WORST FOODIE NIGHTMARE! There was nothing in their books, not my name, phone number, nothing!

I was so embarrassed, mad and baffled as this rarely happens to me (besides that time at Pure Spirits), especially since I confirmed days ago. The hostess said she couldn’t help me unless I could provide proof I called them, mentioning I could have accidentally called their other location up North instead.

I don’t think I would ever make such a mistake and fortunately I had my call history to prove it. It was crazy busy at the restaurant so I tried to be understanding but the hostess had us wait for an 1hr and 20mins before the next table was free even though she said it would be only be another 30-45 minutes. We stuck around that long because everyone was looking forward to AYCE and there were no other nearby AYCE restaurants.

I know the hostess was trying her best given the circumstances but I just didn’t like how they didn’t have any back up solutions. Whether it was offering us a greater discount or getting the manager to help, etc. All I heard was “well, what can I do?” and “I can’t do anything about it.”

They did provide a 15% discount at the end of the meal if we paid cash (something I have had before because I was a student. Saved me about $4). Still, I thought they could have done better to handle our customer service situation. We were generally cooperative and didn’t cause any trouble. Decided to just stay outside the restaurant while waiting for our table, browsing wasn’t much of an option since everything else was mainly closed in that area.

We were finally seated at 9:20-9:30pm and finished around 11pm. I guess one of our servers was tired because he seemed very lax in taking orders and was barely coherent.  Felt like he might pass out or something, very strange behaviour. The  sushi also started to look sloppy too. Some of them seemed like they were just quickly meshed together. I know its was late but it doesn’t excuse the laziness in food presentation.

In the end, I would probably still visit them again because realistically it is one of the few if not only one decent AYCE sushi restaurant downtown. However, I have been greatly disappointed with their service and will probably keep this in mind next time I suggest a sushi restaurant to friends.

Lesson learned: write down the name of who is doing reservation!

TIP: Suggest coming here in small groups.

Website: http://www.ajisai.ca/
Location: Various locations. Review for 467 Queen St. West, Toronto Ontario M5C 2A9
Telephone: (416) 603-3366

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Aji Sai on Urbanspoon

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Lim Ga Ne Restaurant – Bloor ★★★

Price: $10+

Surprised at this restaurant’s apparent anonymity as its located near Owl of Minerva and right across the famed Buk Chang Dong Soon Tofu restaurant. I had to suggest this restaurant to Urbanspoon, so for further reviews try Yelp or Google reviews. If you have trouble finding it, the outside exterior has orange signage and the interior is simply decorated with wooden furnishings. It’s a bit plain but typical of a cheap Asian restaurant, where food and affordability is the emphasis not decor.

I have been on a Korean food binge lately and came across Lim Ga Ne while in the area. Decided to come with my family because my mom wanted to try a variety of Korean dishes (she likes to cook). The first dish we received was a complimentary pancake appetizer, a nice yummy touch I appreciated. Then we had the bibimbap I usually love to order, which I sadly did not love at this restaurant. Felt it was a bit bland and missing a certain “jena se quai” – Korean style. Our third dish was hot noodles, also fine but nothing I would usually order as I typically eat that at home.

It was during this food fest that the bowls of rice my mom ordered arrived, we were given black rice aka purple/jasmine rice. For those of you who haven’t tried it, it is like sticky rice and has lots of nutrients. Black rice is something new to me as well but I would recommend trying it. 🙂

Finally we reach my last dish, the samgapsal! For about $35, you can get this combo with a complimentary stew. I chose kimchi stew because I love kimchi and thought it might taste good. I was wrong, so wrong. I would not recommend this when ordering, it tasted like kimchi and water… JUST THAT. However, the samgapsal was really good! The meat’s tender and soft, definitely filling for two or three people. Wrap up the meat with lettuce and kimchi, dip in sauce provided and let the foodie-liciousness of it take over! 😀

Service was good, my table was taking a long time to order but our server was nice enough not to show her impatience. Especially since it got noticeably busier later on.

Overall, I would definitely visit again if just for the samgapsal and rice dishes. I do suggest making reservations if you plan on dining in the evening though, I think it gets busier then.

Dress code: Casual, nice for friends and family. You will particularly enjoy it if you are familiar with the Korean language and pop culture. They only play Korean shows on their Television. No subs!! Haha.

Website: N/A
Location: 692 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M6G 2T9
Telephone: (416) 535-0345
Hours: N/A

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Lim Ga Ne Restaurant on Urbanspoon